CHULA VISTA, Calif. — The Chula Vista Police Department has confirmed the arrest of Larry Millete for the murder of his wife Maya Millete.
A large police presence was at the home of Larry Millete in Chula Vista early Tuesday afternoon.
"I received a courtesy call from the Deputy District Attorney alerting me to the arrest of Larry. He is going to be charged with murder," said Bonita Martinez, attorney for Larry Millete. "This is a surprise to me since they have no proof Maya is dead and I believe she is still alive."
The CVPD held a press conference Tuesday at 3:30 p.m. and discussed the details of the investigation.
Watch the full update from Chula Vista Police and San Diego District Attorney:
At Tuesday's press conference, San Diego District Attorney Summer Stephan unequivocally accused the suspect of killing his wife but acknowledged that "there's going to be questions" about his arrest and prosecution due to the fact that the victim's body is still missing.
"California law...similar to across the nation, is very clear...that we can file murder charges despite not having a body," said Stephen. "In fact, the law is so crystal-clear that we cannot let someone murder someone and gain a benefit by hiding the body in a way that we can't recover it."
Though Maya's body has not been found, Chula Vista police have enough circumstantial evidence to prove Larry Millete killed his wife.
Authorities shared some of the evidence at the press conference, including the fact that on January 7, the day Maya Millete went missing, she contacted a divorce attorney, something Larry was aware of.
District Attorney Stephan says Larry was against getting a divorce and had even contacted "spell casters" in hopes of convincing Maya to stay with him.
He allegedly hoped she would get injured or get into an accident to force her to live at home.
The day after she went missing, Stephan says Larry left his house with their 4-year-old son for more than 11 hours.
He told detectives he went to Solana Beach, but when asked to point the location on a map, he pointed to Torrey Pines.
Meanwhile, police say Larry did not show up for work that day, something his employer said was unusual.
Investigators believe he left to dispose of Maya's body somewhere, but authorities can't narrow down a search area since he left his phone at home that day.
May Millete's sister reported her missing Jan. 9, two days after the last known sighting of her. Her family insisted that her absence was highly suspicious, telling news crews she would never leave her three children, ages 4, 9 and 11, or voluntarily miss her eldest daughter's birthday, which was days after the woman's disappearance.
"I want to say thank you to everyone for being here today...for all the support," said Maricris Tabalanza Drouaillet, Maya's sister who spoke at Tuesday's press conference. "It's been nine months...it's just overwhelming at this time for me... It's been really hard, he's our family. It's hard to go against the family...He's been with us for 20 years."
Police searched the couple's Paseo Los Gatos house that month and two more times in May and July, and have executed nearly six dozen other warrants allowing them to seek evidence in various residences and vehicles, and from cellular and electronic devices, financial records, social media accounts and other online data, according to Lt. Dan Peak, a spokesman for the Chula Vista Police Department.
Authorities also served her husband with a gun-violence restraining order.
Investigators are asking anyone who may have seen a black GS460 Lexus with the license plate "MEILANI" pulled to the side of the road the day of Maya's disappearance to contact police.
Larry is being held without bail and is scheduled to be arraigned on Thursday, Oct. 21 at 1:30 p.m.
WATCH RELATED: Millete Investigation update: Husband Larry's arrest, Maya still missing (October 2021)